Friday, May 7, 2010

Thursday, April 29, 2010

Child Sex Trafficking in Cambodia

Just wanted to share this youtube, even though it is already the end of the semester and maybe this blog will disappear soon. Such a sad sad reality. Made me feel like crying when I saw the kids at the counselling session. Some are as young as 4!

Anyway good luck to everyone for their finals.

Friday, April 23, 2010

Blog Representative

Can I have the full name list of all the class representatives for the blog updating? Since I don't receive all 5 form for blog participation, the least that I can do is to give extra 3 marks as an appreciation to all the representative (on presentation marks).

movie review~

A story about a boy who suffer from cancer writing letters to God~ and involve wif a postman who have complicated lifestyle, and he try 2help the boy~

Children of Cambodia
A trip to Siem Reap, Cambodia has opened my eyes to the reality of how children live in rural, under-developed countries like Cambodia. Children there are poor and unhygienic. Their faces and hands are dirty and clothes looks like they have never been washed.
Children are EVERYWHERE in Siem Reap. And often, kids as young as TWO YEARS OLD will work for their parents selling trinkets and souvenirs to tourist.  The level of English command of these children is surprisingly good. I asked them where they learned English from, and they said from tourists. No wonder got American accent -_-‘’  
Here are some of the pictures that I took. 
 Angkor Wat

              The place where they shot Tomb Raider starring Angelina Jolie

 2 kids begging on one of the Angkor buildings. Their hair very yellow. Malnutrition or being in the sun too much?

Kids selling souvenirs to tourists. Oh and that’s my dad =]
My dad refused to buy anything from them and they kept reducing the price.

Girl: Sir, buy bracelet. 5 Dollar for 1.
Dad: No thanks, I don’t need it.
Girl: Buy for your daughter, Sir. 3 Dollar, 3 Dollar.
Dad: No thanks. *Smiles*
Girl: Sir, please. 1 Dollar for 1, Sir.
Dad: No thanks, really.  * walks quickly trying to escape*
Girl: 50 cents, Sir.
Dad: Shakes head.   *runs away*
Girl: FREE, SIR!  

Funny lar. Haha!

Injured child

Cyber Café Cambodia style

 The next day we went to visit the floating village on Tonle Sap Lake. It is the largest freshwater lake in Southeast Asia. (

This was our tour guide on the lake. He’s only 18

Floating houses on the lake

Children living on the lake

Floating basketball court

 Small kid following parents to fish

The 2 boys in the red circles are paralyzed. They put themselves in a basin like thing and float to tourists and ask them for money because they can’t afford to go to school.

 Floating school
These children need donations from other people to be able to buy uniform, books and stationery.

The guy in white is the teacher

Education is seen as a privilege in Cambodia. Not every child gets the opportunity to study.

This trip to Siem Reap has been an eye opener to how poor and difficult life can be in an undeveloped country. The people there are very friendly. This place and its people have really touched my heart and helped me appreciate the things I do have. If you have the opportunity I would recommend you to visit this place. =]

 Here are some additional pictures I took from Hanoi, Vietnam.  Apparently the kids there are also very “geng”.  XD

credits to Carmen Chan Jia Wen, T4

Thursday, April 22, 2010

classic poem for children

Where did you come from, baby dear?
Where did you come from, baby dear?
Out of the everywhere into here.

Where did you get your eyes so blue?
Out of the sky as I came through.

What makes the light in them sparkle and spin?
Some of the starry spikes left in.

Where did you get that little tear?
I found it waiting when I got here.

What makes your forehead so smooth and high?
A soft hand stroked it as I went by.

What makes your cheek like a warm white rose?
I saw something better than anyone knows.

Whence that three-cornered smile of bliss?
Three angels gave me at once a kiss.

Where did you get this pearly ear?
God spoke, and it came out to hear.

Where did you get those arms and hands?
Love made itself into hooks and bands.

Feet, whence did you come, you darling things?
From the same box as the cherubs' wings.

How did they all just come to be you?
God thought about me, and so I grew.
But how did you come to us, you dear?
God thought about you, and so I am here.

credits to Tang Tze Chiun, T4

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

12-year-old Speaks Out on the Issue of Abortion

Credits to Carmen Chan Jia Wen

Fetal Development

Children With Autism: Learning How To Learn

Credits to Lim Wei Liang

Last Lecture and Tutorials

There are some changes for this week's tutorials and lecture, please refer to the following timetable:

Week 14 Tutorial: to cover Chapter 13-14:
Thursday 1100-1230 (for Tutorial 2, 4 and 5) B110A
Thursday 1230-1400 (for Tutorial 1, 3, and 5) B110A
Students from T5 can choose to attend either one.

Extra tutorial (attendance will be taken but not compulsory)
Thursday 1700-1830 (for Tutorial 1, 2, 3 and 4) B101A

Last Lecture:
Friday 1200-1400 (for all)

Intervention School Workshop

Credits to Ong Vil Sern

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Stimulating a Baby's Sensory Development

credits to Julian Lim

Parenting Advice - Healthy Parent-Child Relationships

credits to Julian Lim

Albert Bandura Bobo Doll experiment

credits to Julian Lim

Characteristics of Gifted Children

Identifying The Gifted

1. Einstein was four years old before he could speak and seven before he could read.
2. Isaac Newton did poorly in grade school.
3. When Thomas Edison was a boy, his teachers told him he was too stupid to learn anything.
4. F.W.Woolworth got a job in a dry goods store when he was 21. But his employers would not let him wait on a customer because he "Didn't have enough sense."
5. A newspaper editor fired Walt Disney because he had "No good ideas"
6. Caruso's music teacher told him "You can't sing, you have no voice at all."
7. Leo Tolstoy flunked out of college.
8. Verner Von Braun flunked 9th grade algebra.
9. Admiral Richard E. Byrd had been retired from the navy, as, "Unfit for service" Until he flew over both poles.
10. Louis Pasteur was rated as mediocre in chemistry when he attended the Royal College
11. Abraham Lincoln entered The Black Hawk War as a captain and came out a private
12. Fred Waring was once rejected from high school chorus.
13. Winston Churchill failed the sixth grade.

Recognizing the Characteristics of Gifted Children
ERIC Clearinghouse on Handicapped and Gifted Children (1985) cites three types of characteristics of gifted children: general behavioral, learning, and creative characteristics.
General Behavior Characteristics

Gifted children's behavior differs from that of their age-mates in the following ways:
# Many gifted children learn to read early, with better comprehension of the nuances of language. As much as half the gifted and talented population has learned to read before entering school.
# Gifted children often read widely, quickly, and intensely and have large vocabularies.
# Gifted children commonly learn basic skills better, more quickly, and with less practice.
# They are better able to construct and handle abstractions.
# They often pick up and interpret nonverbal cues and can draw inferences that other children need to have spelled out for them.
# They take less for granted, seeking the "hows" and "whys."
# They can work independently at an earlier age and can concentrate for longer periods.
# Their interests are both wildly eclectic and intensely focused.
# They often have seemingly boundless energy, which sometimes leads to a misdiagnosis of hyperactivity.
# They usually respond and relate well to parents, teachers, and other adults. They may prefer the company of older children and adults to that of their peers.
# They like to learn new things, are willing to examine the unusual, and are highly inquisitive.
# They tackle tasks and problems in a well-organized, goal-directed, and efficient manner.
# They exhibit an intrinsic motivation to learn, find out, or explore and are often very persistent. "I'd rather do it myself" is a common attitude.

Learning Characteristics

Gifted children are natural learners who often show many of these characteristics:
# They may show keen powers of observation and a sense of the significant; they have an eye for important details.
# They may read a great deal on their own, preferring books and magazines written for children older than they are.
# They often take great pleasure in intellectual activity.
# They have well-developed powers of abstraction, conceptualization, and synthesis.
# They readily see cause-effect relationships.
# They often display a questioning attitude and seek information for its own sake as much as for its usefulness.
# They are often skeptical, critical, and evaluative. They are quick to spot inconsistencies.
# They often have a large storehouse of information about a variety of topics, which they can recall quickly.
# They readily grasp underlying principles and can often make valid generalizations about events, people, or objects.
# They quickly perceive similarities, differences, and anomalies.
# They often attack complicated material by separating it into components and analyzing it systematically.

Creative Characteristics

Gifted children's creative abilities often set them apart from their age-mates. These characteristics may take the following forms:
# Gifted children are fluent thinkers, able to generate possibilities, consequences, or related ideas.
# They are flexible thinkers, able to use many different alternatives and approaches to problem solving.
# They are original thinkers, seeking new, unusual, or unconventional associations and combinations among items of information.
# They can also see relationships among seemingly unrelated objects, ideas, or facts.
# They are elaborate thinkers, producing new steps, ideas, responses, or other embellishments to a basic idea, situation, or problems.
# They are willing to entertain complexity and seem to thrive on problem solving.
# They are good guessers and can readily construct hypotheses or "what if" questions.
# They often are aware of their own impulsiveness and irrationality, and they show emotional sensitivity.
# They are extremely curious about objects, ideas, situations, or events.
# They often display intellectual playfulness and like to fantasize and imagine.
# They can be less intellectually inhibited than their peers are in expressing opinions and ideas, and they often disagree spiritedly with others' statements.
# They are sensitive to beauty and are attracted to aesthetic values.

Who are the Highly Gifted?

Highly gifted children tend to be those who demonstrate asynchronous development. Due to their high cognitive abilities and high intensities they experience and relate to the world in unique ways. These children are often found as a result of extremely high scores on an individually scored IQ tests, generally above the 140 IQ range. Others may be prodigies in areas such as math, science, language and/or the arts. Profoundly gifted children can score in excess of 170 IQ.

Highly gifted children demonstrate characteristics such as the extreme need to:

1. Learn at a much faster pace.
2. Process material to a much greater depth.
3. Show incredible intensity in energy, imagination, intellectual prowess, sensitivity, and emotion which are not typical in the general population.

The child of 160+ is as different from the child of 130 IQ as that child is different from the child of average ability. Current research suggests that there may be higher incidence of children in this high range than previously thought. Due to their unique characteristics, these children are particularly vulnerable. Highly gifted children need a specialized advocacy because very little has been done to develop appropriate curriculum and non-traditional options for these children.

Some Myths About Gifted Children

Gifted Kids are like cream that rises to the top in a classroom:

Not necessarily. Gifted Children can have hidden learning disabilities that go undiscovered because they can easily compensate for them in the early years. As time goes on though, it becomes harder and harder for them to excel. Which can lead to behavior problems and depression.

Gifted Kids are so smart they do fine with or without special programs:

They may appear to do fine on their own. But without proper challenge they can become bored and unruly. As the years go by they may find it harder and harder as work does become more challenging, since they never faced challenge before.

Gifted and Talented means the same thing:

Again, not necessarily. There is no rule that states that a child who is capable of scoring to the high ninety percentiles on group achievement testing must be considered gifted. We must remember that achievement tests like the Metropolitan Achievement Tests are "Grade Level Testing". Such a child is most definitely Academically Talented. But further individualized IQ and out of level academic testing must be given before we can define that child as "Gifted". At the same time, there is no rule that states a child identified as gifted should be Achieving to high standards in the classroom. This type of stereotyping can do serious and irreversible damage to both groups. ANY child can benefit from enrichment. Academically Talented Children can benefit from Honors (Grade Level) Classes. Intellectually Gifted children need a differentiated curriculum and possibly even a different environment.

They need to go through school with their own age mates:

Where it's true that children need to play and interact socially with other children their age, they do not need to learn with them. Especially in the case of a highly gifted child who may have a chronological age of six and a mental age of 11 who has been reading since two. To put that child in a reading class with other six year olds who are just learning to read is sheer torture for that child.

Giftedness is something to be jealous about:

This is perhaps the most damaging myth. More often than not gifted children can feel isolated and misunderstood. They have more adult tastes in music, clothing, reading material and food. These differences to other children can cause them to be shunned and even abused verbally or physically by other children. Experts in the field of gifted education are beginning to address the higher incidences of ADHD and Spelling/Handwriting disabilities in the gifted population verses those in the much larger normal population.

Posted by Ong Si Li, T3

Raw Food Diet for Children: Vegetables Juice by Annejet

Posted by Chung Winnie, T3

The Learning Environment That's Best for Children

We feel the learning environment that best illustrates an atmosphere prepared for accelerated learning is a properly equipped Montessori classroom. Not only do they have properly proportioned furniture, they use some of the best hands-on equipment and lessons for children of any school we've found. To the right is a picture of a typical Montessori classroom.

What Makes the Best Learning Environment for Home or in School?

1. According to Maria Montessori, the learning environment at school or home should be sparse but housed with carefully chosen materials which encourage the child to work, stay concentrated and happy. A crowded or chaotic environment can cause stress and dissipate a child's energy. Too many materials, or inappropriate materials can be worse than too few. It's important to keep games and lessons fresh and interesting. Simple is better.

2. Bond with your children through love and closeness. Love is probably the most important element to the success of your child's ability to reap the full benefits of accelerated learning methods. Love makes your young children feel safe, comfortable and calm. Love itself can make almost any home or school the best learning environment for your children.

3. Try not to use colors in the learning environment that are harsh or too strong. Use soft cushy couches to relax on and a defined location like a 3 x 2 foot swatch of carpet on the floor to present lessons and games on and where your young child will use them. Older children would be playing accelerated learning games on computer or using accelerated learning right brain left brain card games, often with friends or classmates.

4. Keep unwanted odors out of this area as well as TV noise or other noises that can disturb attention and concentration.

Posted by Chung Winnie, T3

Healthy Eating

Whether you have a toddler or a teen, here are five of the best strategies to improve nutrition and encourage smart eating habits:

1. Have regular family meals.
2. Serve a variety of healthy foods and snacks.
3. Be a role model by eating healthy yourself.
4. Avoid battles over food.
5. Involve kids in the process.

But it's not easy when everyone is juggling busy schedules and convenience food, such as fast food, is so readily available.

Here are some ways to incorporate all five strategies into your routine.
Family Meals

Family meals are a comforting ritual for both parents and kids. Children like the predictability of family meals and parents get a chance to catch up with their kids. Kids who take part in regular family meals are also:

* more likely to eat fruits, vegetables, and grains
* less likely to snack on unhealthy foods
* less likely to smoke, use marijuana, or drink alcohol

In addition, family meals offer the chance to introduce kids to new foods and to act as a role model for healthy eating.

Teens may turn up their noses at the prospect of a family meal — not surprising because they're busy and want to be more independent. Yet studies find that teens still want their parents' advice and counsel, so use mealtime as a chance to reconnect. Also, consider trying these strategies:

* Allow your teen to invite a friend to dinner.
* Involve your teen in meal planning and preparation.
* Keep mealtime calm and congenial — no lectures or arguing.

What counts as a family meal? Any time you and your family eat together — whether it's takeout food or a home-cooked meal with all the trimmings. Strive for nutritious food and a time when everyone can be there. This may mean eating dinner a little later to accommodate a child who's at sports practice. It can also mean setting aside time on the weekends, such as Sunday brunch, when it may be more convenient to gather as a group.

Posted by Chung Winnie, T3

Excellence Begins Young

Active Children Become Healthy Adults

Your child has more energy packed away in that little body than you realize. In fact, children are naturally active and can’t sit still for long. If you can start and keep them active in their formative years, it can help form a lifetime of active living. For what is wealth without health?

What are the benefits of exercise?

Children instinctively like to play, run, skip and jump around. To them, that is exercise. The more the physical activity, the better their motor skills will develop. But all that can change when we let our children sit too long in front of the TV.

Did you know that an active child tends to:
Develop a leaner body with stronger bones and muscles

Maintain a healthy weight

Sleep better

Avoid obesity related diseases like cardiovascular disease later in adult life

If your home has a staircase, place the appropriate barriers until your child can manage the stairs unattended.

Have better self confidence

Be more alert

How long should your child exercise?

Toddlers should accumulate at least 30 minutes of moderate exercise or activity daily. This can be broken up into 15 minutes of play each time

Preschoolers should accumulate at least 60 minutes of moderate to intense exercise or activity daily. This can be broken up into 30 minutes of play each time

What kind of exercise or activity should your child be doing?

Each child develops at his or her own pace. So it’s important to identify what your child can or cannot do and what skills are right for his or her age.

Generally, young children can walk, run, jump around, climb, kick and even throw a ball. Identifying their ability will help you plan their activity and play games that are appropriate for their age.

How to cultivate the habit to exercise?

The best way to get your child to enjoy more exercise is to spend some time playing with them.
Roll a ball around for your child to catch.

Play “catch” with older children.

Switch off the substituted “babysitter”. Many parents are guilty of using the TV as a substitute babysitter to distract their children. Remember that this will become habit forming.

Put them together with other children their age. Children naturally play together.

Let them play with “dirt”. Create a sandbox and fill it with sand. You will be surprised at how much time your child can spend in it. Make sure this activity is supervised as children have a tendency to put sand into their mouths.

Water! Children who can sit up love to play in an inflatable pool. Fill the water to no more than the height of your fist. Drop in some of your child’s favourite toys and you’ll have a child delightfully splashing around. Supervise and play with him or her as water can be dangerous for any child that has not learnt how to swim!

Credits to Lim Wei Liang

Excellence Begins Young

Tips to discipline your child

Discipline is important to teach your child the appropriate behaviour, the difference between right and wrong, and instill family values in a loving, respectful way.

Understand your child

Children are little people who have a limited vocabulary and ability to communicate. They are highly unpredictable and clumsy. An expression of excitement can sometimes turn into an accidental slap. They can be happy one minute and cranky the next. They are possessive and most times have no idea what is acceptable behaviour or not at this young age. All these can really test your patience as they push the boundaries.

It will take time, patience and lots of love and understanding for your child to learn and respect your authority. While every child is unique in his or her own way and should be treated according to individual needs, here are some general tips on how to get started on disciplining your child.
Be clear about the rules. Set boundaries. Be sure your child understands what is right or unacceptable behaviour, and what is not.

Be consistent. If a certain behaviour is not acceptable at a friend’s home or outside, it is also not acceptable at home. We know it can be tough but if we are not consistent, the child can get confused by what is really acceptable and not.

Be firm yet understanding. Once you have said “no”, don’t change your mind. Stick to your rule even when your child tries to bend the rule or change your mind about it. Take the time to explain why you said “no”.

Be gentle. Most times your child will respect your decision when you talk to them gently. It is usually not what you say but how you say it.

Be watchful. Always supervise your child so that they know you are watching their actions.

Be realistic. Remember, what is normal for an adult is not normal for a child. Be down-to-earth and set realistic boundaries or rules.

Be fair. Be specific about what the mistake is. Try not to generalize as this will confuse your child and de-motivate him or her. Be sure not to get personal, so criticize the mistake or bad behaviour but not your child.

Be patient. Don’t hit your child out of frustration because you can’t retract the action after you’ve done it. Just remember that most of the time, your child is just testing and learning and most of their mistakes are unconscious. Try counting to ten first!

Be in agreement. Each parent may have different parenting styles. Try to decide and agree on important and common rules and values that you want to instill in your child. This is to avoid confusing your child. Be supportive of your spouse’s discipline decisions even if you do not agree. Discuss conflicting issues in private so that the both of you can, as they say, agree to disagree.

Be creative. Make it fun for your child to follow the rules. Instead of just instructing your child to do something, turn it into a game instead. For example you may say you won’t tickle his toes until if he cleans up. Be encouraging about cleaning up or having good manners.

Be an example. Your child simply loves to imitate you. So, be sure to set a good example and explain your actions even if they don’t understand why you are doing things a certain way. Actions speak louder than words.

Be a better listener. Show your child that he or she is important by listening. This builds confidence, fosters respect and gives assurance that you will be fair in your judgement.

Be encouraging. When you find your child being good, compliment him or her often or display affection like giving a hug. This positive reinforcement will boost self-esteem and motivate your child to be more positive about following the rules.

Be loving. It’s important for your child to feel loved and secure. Always give your child lots of hugs and kisses so that your child knows that you love him or her, even when you have to discipline him or her.

Credits to Lim Wei Liang

Monday, April 19, 2010

Child Care& Development: Infant Development Toys

Rather than buying expensive infant development toys, use common household items, like pots, pans, spoons, brightly colored objects and various textures, to enhance infant development.

received from- mok hui yin

Playing with 7 month-old baby

Playing with a 7-month-old baby includes stacking toys and blocks that allow a child to build and interact. Play with a baby during the first formative months with tips from a licensed psychotherapist in this free video on child development.

received from- mok hui yin

Gifted Children Behavior

By Dr.Linda Karges-Bone
B.S. in Special and Elementary Education from the College of Charleston (1981), M.Ed. in Special Education, certification in Early Childhood Education (1983), Ed.D. in Curriculum and Instruction at the University of South Carolina at Columbia (1994).

Posted by Eric Ong Chee Hoe, T3

Are Gifted Children Born or Made?

Debates still go on about this topic, however, both nature and nurture factor should be accounted for in developing a child's potential to it's fullest. I think, without natural talent a person can go only so far with all training available, Isaac Newton would probably just take and eat the apple that fell on his head instead of discovering the Law of Gravity and natural talent without proper stimuli's leave less chance for developing it's potential, a lot of parents send their prodigy child to higher level of learning institution,but they are still young, what about parental guidance? Booze and stress are abundant.

Posted by Eric Ong Chee Hoe, T3

Child Prodigies

Taken from The Star Online.

According to Dr David Henry Feldman, “a child prodigy is a child younger than 10 years old who can perform at the level of a highly trained adult in a very demanding field of endeavor.” They are like little Mozarts and Einsteins that act like little innocent kids but can beat you at your game so bad, you have to call them sifu (if he's a prodigy at your field).

They mostly strive in the field of music, maths and even chess but not so in the form of business, law, dance and writing.

According to author Alissa Quart, prodigies are found more in quantitative fields like maths, and less in qualitative disciplines,where it are hard to measure. Also, contrary to beliefs, high IQ is not correlated to being a prodigy. According to Australian educational specialist for gifted children, many creative children don't do well in standardized exams. Ellen Winner, a psychology professor and a book author on gifted children, says parents play a vital role in providing stimulating environments for their child to grow and they themselves are often related in the same field as their prodigy child , Pablo Picasso's father was an artist, Mozart's dad was a musician.

Author Quart states that the overly pressured children can lead to emotional and mental problems like anxiety and low self esteem. Brandenn Bremmer who entered college at age 10, committed suicide by shooting himself in the head in 2005 at the age of 14. He said in an interview with Quart: “America is a society that demands perfection.” Some gifted youngsters couldn't cope while others have breakdowns due to self-image problems when they fail to achieve, according to Alan Goldberg, an US sports psychology consultant.

Psychologist Lewis Terman studied 1,500 indicated child prodigies throughout their lives in a 1921 study on intelligence. He found that being gifted in early life is not a guarantee for success in life, many them didn't make it when they reached adulthood. Dr Feldman explains that this is because prodigies specialize in one certain area,not overall. The focus in developing one area leads to neglecting other areas. In the early 20th century, Erwin Nyiregyhazi, a piano prodigy, couldn't even tie his own shoes at the age of 21.

Contrary to the earlier study, Terman’s studies showed that many of his subjects made huge contribution to humanity. Examples: Physicist Isaac Newton, double Nobel Prize winner Marie Curie, composer Felix Mendelssohn, and violin genius and conductor Yehudi Menuhin.
Child prodigies who failed to meet expectations, make the news, but those who live quietly and successfully hardly draw any attention ironically. Also, interestingly not all child start as prodigies but end up changing the world, Charles Darwin and Albert Einstein are just two of other blokes who made themselves into brilliant scientists. No body knew they existed in the beginning.

Look at this dude,

(oh they make mistakes too hehe, this is the only time when we get to laugh at them,just kidding of course)

Check out more examples of people you might be awed or envied at


S.S.Yoga. (2008). Child prodigy : two sides of genius. Retrieved March 18,2010 from

Posted by Eric Ong Chee Hoe, T3

Down Syndrome

Down Syndrome is a chromosomal abnormality and probably the most common genetic condition, occurs in approximately one in every eight hundred to one thousand live births or accounts for approximately 5-6 per cent of intellectual retardation. Although, most students with Down's Syndrome are between the mild to moderate range of mental retardation.

Initially, Down's Syndrome was given the label of Mongolism due to the physical characteristics of the disorder. A student with Down's Syndrome is usually quite recognizable due to characteristics like a smaller overall stature, flat facial profile, thick epicanthal folds in the corners of their eyes, protruding tongues which is due to their smaller oral cavity and muscle hypotonia - low muscle tone.

Best Practices
• Inclusion: Students with special needs should be full members of age appropriate inclusional classes to the extent they can be. Effective inclusion means that the teacher must be fully supportive of the model. The strategies you use to reach and teach the Down's student will often be beneficial to many learners in the classroom. See the inclusional checklist Inclusion is a good practice for students with Down's Syndrome. Theinclusional environment is less likely to stigmatize and provide a much more natural environment for the students. There are more opportunities for peer relationships to occur and much of the research states that full integration works better.

• Self-Esteem: The physical characteristics of a Down's student will often result in a lowered self-esteem which means you will need to take every opportunity to boost self confidenceand instill pride through a variety of strategies.

Intellectual: Down's students usually face many intellectual challenges. Strategies that work for mildly retarded students and or students with significant learning disabilities will also work with Down's students. Much literature have stated that most individuals with Down syndrome do not progress beyond the intellectual capabilities of a normal developing six to eight year old (Kliewer 1993). However, always strive to move the child progressively along the learning continuum, never assume the child isn't capable. Solid intervention and high quality instruction have been proven to lead to improved academic achievement for Down's students. Use a multi-modal approach which works best for all students. Use as many concrete materials and real world authentic situations as is possible. Use language appropriate for student understanding and speak slowly when necessary. Always break tasks into smaller steps and provide instruction for each step. Remember, a student with Down's Syndrome will usually have a good short term memory.

• Short attention spans are also prevalent among students with Down's. Direct instruction in short periods of time along with smaller chunks of activities will help to support learning. Introducing new material slowly, sequentially and in a step by step fashion will help to ensure maximum learning occurs.

Distractibility: Down's students are ofen easily distracted. You'll need to employ strategies that work to minimize distractions such as keeping the student away from the window, using a slightly more structured environment, keeping the noise level down and having an orderly classroom where students are free from surprises and know what your expectations, routines and rules are.

• Speech and Language: Down's students all suffer from serious problems such as hearing difficulties and articulation problems. Sometimes they will require speech/language intervention and a great deal of direct instruction. In some cases,augmentative or facilitated communication will be a good alternative for communication. Use patience and model appropriate interactions at all times.

Behavior Management Techniques used for other students should not differ for the student with Down's Syndrome. Again, positive reinforcement is a much better method than anything punitive. Reinforcers need to be meaningful.

Todays classroom has many special needs students, and the inclusional model is often the best model and one supported by research. The inclusive classrooms lets all students learn what it means to be a full member of a school community. Treat all students as valued learners. Although many teachers don't have experience with Down's Syndrome, they have been teaching these students very well for a long time.

Posted by Lim Sin Loong,T3

Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) in Children

Childhood ADHD -- attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder -- is diagnosed after a child has shown six or more specific symptoms of inactivity and/or hyperactivity on a regular basis for more than six months in more than two settings. There is no single test for ADHD.

A doctor can diagnose ADHD with the help of standard guidelines. The diagnosis of ADHD involves the gathering of information from several sources, including school, caregivers, and parents. The doctor will consider how a child's behavior compares with that of other children the same age.

ADHD in Children

Symptoms of Childhood ADHD

Children with ADHD show signs of inattention, hyperactivity, and/or impulsivity in specific ways. These children:
• Are in constant motion.
• Squirm and fidget.
• Do not seem to listen.
• Have difficulty playing quietly.
• Often talk excessively.
• Interrupt or intrude on others.
• Are easily distracted.
• Do not finish tasks.

Some behaviors can appear to be ADHD-related, but are not. Some causes of ADHD-like behavior are:
• A sudden life change (such as divorce, a death in the family, or moving).
• Undetected seizures.
• Medical disorders affecting brain function.
• Anxiety.
• Depression.

How Is ADHD Diagnosed?

Your child's primary care doctor can determine whether your child has ADHD using standard guidelines developed by the American Academy of Pediatrics. These diagnosis guidelines are for children 6 to 12 years of age.

Know that it is very difficult to diagnose ADHD in children younger than 5 years of age. That's because many preschool children have some ADHD symptoms in various situations. In addition, children change very rapidly during the preschool years. It is also difficult to diagnose ADHD once a child becomes a teenager.

The process of diagnosing ADHD requires several steps and involves gathering a lot of information from multiple sources. You, your child, your child's school, and other caregivers should be involved in assessing your child's behavior.

A physician can conduct a medical history to help put a child's behavior in context. They will ask what symptoms a child is showing, how long the symptoms have occurred, and how the behavior affects a child and his/her family.

Types of ADHD in Children
Doctors may classify symptoms as the following types of ADHD:
• Combined Type (Inattentive/Hyperactive/Impulsive). Children with this type of ADHD show all three symptoms. This is the most common form of ADHD.
• Hyperactive/Impulsive Type. Children show both hyperactive and impulsive behavior, but are able to pay attention.
• Inattentive Type. Formerly known as attention deficit disorder (ADD), these children are not overly active. They do not disrupt the classroom or other activities, so their symptoms might not be noticed.

ADHD Treatment Overview
Education of the child and family is an essential component of any treatment plan, which may encompass special education programs, psychological intervention, and drug treatment. Be sure to discuss all options with your child's health care provider to find the best treatment for him or her.
Studies show that long-term treatment with a combination of medications andbehavioral therapy is far superior to just medication treatment, or no specific treatments in managing hyperactivity, impulsivity, inattention, and symptoms of anxiety and depression. Those kids treated with both ADHD drugs and therapy also had better social skills.

Drugs for Childhood ADHD
A class of drugs called psychostimulants or stimulants for short is a highly effective treatment for childhood ADHD. These medicines, including Ritalin, Concerta, and Adderall XR, help children to focus their thoughts and ignore distractions. Stimulant medications are effective in 70% to 80% of patients.
Another treatment used to treat ADHD in kids is the nonstimulant medication, Strattera. More studies will need to be done to contrast Strattera with the medications already available, but the evidence to date indicates that over 70% of children with ADHD given Strattera have significant improvement in their symptoms.
ADHD medicines are available in short-acting (immediate-release), intermediate-acting, and long-acting forms. It may take some time for a physician to find the best medication, dosage, and schedule for an individual with ADHD. ADHD drugs sometimes have side effects, but these tend to happen early in treatment. Usually, side effects are mild and short-lived.

Behavioral Treatments for Children With ADHD
Behavioral treatment for children with ADHD involves adjusting the environment to promote more successful social interactions. Such adjustments include creating more structure, encouraging routines, and clearly stating expectations of the child with ADHD.

Other forms of ADHD treatment that may benefit the child include:
• Social skills training. This can help a child with ADHD learn behaviors that will help them develop and maintain social relationships.
• Support groups and parenting skills training. Education and support for the parents can be an integral part of treating ADHD in children.

What Treatment Is Best for My Child?
For children with ADHD, no single treatment is the answer for every child. A child may have undesirable side effects to a medication, making a particular treatment unacceptable. If a child with ADHD also has anxiety or depression, a treatment combining medication and behavioral therapy might be best. Each child's needs and personal history must be carefully considered. It is important to work with a physician to find the best solution for your child.

The ADHD Coach?
Coaching is a relatively new field in the treatment of ADHD in children. ADHD coaches are meant to help children achieve better results in different areas of their lives.

Posted by Lim Sin Loong, T3

Middle Child Syndrome

Middle child syndrome, from the name it is quite obvious that it is a syndrome that generally affects the middle child. Instead of getting into the details of it here, you rather check in to the article and learn all about it.

Remember Stephanie Tanner from the hit SitCom "Full House"? Remember her several issues with "always being in between!" Well, that is a glimpse (a very tiny glimpse) of middle child syndrome for you. Without a doubt, in reality the syndrome can get much worse. So, how does a parent know that their little angel is suffering from a syndrome simply because of the birth order? A lot of questions that need answering, let's take them one at a time.

Middle Child Syndrome Characteristics
What is middle child syndrome? Let's understand the basic concept of middle child syndrome. What does the term entail? What are the middle child syndrome symptoms?
  • The first being that this child will neither be the oldest out of the siblings, nor the youngest. He will be in between.
  • The child will not be a leader of sorts. He will prefer to follow the trends.
  • The child will lack a specific focus, or drive.
  • He will have very very few friends. Mingling with people won't come very easily to him.
  • Relationships won't really be his forte. In fact he will try to shy away from it as far as possible. If he does get into one, it will not last long due to his lack of interest.
  • He will be fairly shy. He will try to go unnoticed and stay out of the radar. Nonetheless, he will do enough to keep the ball rolling.
  • He will be quite artistic and creative.
  • If given direction, and a little egging, he can achieve well in the field of art and literature.
  • He will hate doing monotonous work. Things should have a certain degree of novelty to catch his interest.
  • He will not be able to perform under pressure, at all!!

Yes, not all is bad about the middle child syndrome. However, it is very important to make sure that it is avoided as far as possible. The positive characteristics of middle child syndrome can be seen in a middle child even if he is not suffering from MDS.

The Effects of Middle Child Syndrome
Now, before you go around thinking that every middle child has middle child syndrome, let me tell you that it is not true. Many children don't experience it, because as a part of their nature they are more accepting to different situations. However, in case a child is a victim of middle child syndrome, these are the effects that it would have on the general psyche of the child. Instead of going about in the normal point form, here are a few scenarios to help you understand middle child syndrome psychology better.

Middle Child Syndrome: Case 1
Jeremy was the middle child in the family. He had an older brother and a younger sister. He loved both his siblings dearly. He adored his parents as well. But, that was when everything was normal. However, he was not the school quarter back, his brother was. In fact, Jeremy was not interested in sports at all. He loved reading and had a flair for language. But, this parents were used to his older brother Dave, being out for practices and dates with the cheerleaders and expected the same from him. They often told him that he should participate in sports and didn't understand how he could not be interested in them. This made him resent sports even more. Whenever his parents went out, he was responsible to babysit his sister Kiera. He did not mind it in the start, but when it became a regular affair, he started vent his frustration on his sister. This created a further rift in the siblings and eventually, Jeremy was left with a feeling of being left out!

Middle Child Syndrome: Case 2
Rachel, Smith and Annabelle were siblings. Smith was the middle child. He loved his sisters and loved spending time with them. However, he often felt left out because they were girls and he was a boy. Due to such proximity with girls, Smith was very used to playing with dolls rather than cars. But, he could never let anyone know that for the fear of being ragged. His parents never really treated the three siblings differently. But due to the Middle Child Syndrome he found himself frustrated with the concept of always having to be dropped and picked up to and from school by his super hot older sister. He lost his confidence and found himself and his family giving more importance to Annabelle's teenage issues than his.

Middle Child Syndrome: Case 3
David, Jonathan and Andrew are brothers. They are adults now and Jonathan is the middle child. Jonathan has had middle child syndrome and is suffering from middle child syndrome in adulthood. As a normal victim of middle child syndrome in adults Jonathan has grown up a little distant from his brothers. Jonathan met his girlfriend in David's wedding. But, in his engagement party, he did not expect Andrew to also meet the love of his life. Jonathan felt that Andrew did it on purpose and lost all the interest in the day. Jonathan always felt that he had to try harder to get noticed. This affected his love life as well. He always thinks that he cannot ever be good enough for his parents, and pushes his fiancee in the same direction. To prove his worth, Jonathan hosts the family dinners on a weekly basis, and gets deeply hurt when someone does not show up.

As all the cases above have shown, middle child syndrome is just the child's mind over reacting and wrongly perceiving actions of the family. This makes them lose confidence and get more insecure. Read more on family relationships.

How to Prevent Middle Child Syndrome
Middle child syndrome can have a lot of negative impacts on the mindset and the lifestyle, as well as the relationships of the child. Treating can get a little tough once it goes to an extreme stage, as always, prevention is better than cure. Here are ways you can prevent middle child syndrome.
  • The first step is to be aware of the syndrome. Denying it will only make things worse. Another thing you need to admit is that your child may have it. However, having MDC does not make the child mentally unstable, so, do not put the child down about that.
  • Do not keep the behavior same for all the children. Children always need something unique from their parents. Something that they give no one else. So always have something unique in the way you let each child know you love them.
  • If your child is showing an unusual need to be held and loved, give in to that need. Children don't always let the parents know of things that are bothering them. But, one loving hug and kiss on the head from you may help them out after all.
  • Don't compare your children. It is important that parents realize that not all children are the same. They will have their differences, different strengths and different weaknesses. Acknowledge the differences and love the children for what they are individually. If you compare them, they may start developing an inferiority complex.
  • Never take sides and don't play favorites. The one you shower with the favoritism may benefit, but the others will feel less loved by you. If the children are in a fight, step in and stop the fight, but don't take sides. Tell them both that it is wrong to fight and that no justification matters.
  • Encourage the children to do what they want to do. Do not let them give in to peer pressure, or sibling pressure. It is important that you cheer them on when they feel low about being different about something and support them for all their choices.
  • Use endearing words for children at all times. Even in your anger, do not vent it out on any of the children. If they are wrong, correct them with as much endearment as possible.
  • Be patient. Children are still learning the ropes of life that you have mastered. They may take longer. So be patient and help them as much as possible. Nonetheless, let them also fall, bruise and learn their lessons on their own, to an extent.
All these steps, as a part of a lifestyle, will help you keep middle child syndrome at bay. More so, it is just a better way of raising kids.

This is a very sensitive topic and any mistakes on this front could probably affect your child's life in a negative way. Beat the poison of middle child syndrome with the elixir of love, affection and understanding. This is where I sign off!! All the best!!

PS : Therefore, parents should also pay more attention to middle child and not just always pay attention to the eldest child or the youngest child only.

BY : Lee Meau Hui

Child Behavior: What Parents Can Do to Change Their Child's Behavior

What is normal behavior for a child?
Normal behavior in children depends on the child's age, personality, and physical and emotional development. A child's behavior may be a problem if it doesn't match the expectations of the family or if it is disruptive. Normal or "good" behavior is usually determined by whether it's socially, culturally and developmentally appropriate. Knowing what to expect from your child at each age will help you decide whether his or her behavior is normal.

What can I do to change my child's behavior?
Children tend to continue a behavior when it is rewarded and stop a behavior when it is ignored. Consistency in your reaction to a behavior is important because rewarding and punishing the same behavior at different times confuses your child. When your child's behavior is a problem, you have 3 choices:
• Decide that the behavior is not a problem because it's appropriate to the child's age and stage of development.
• Attempt to stop the behavior, either by ignoring it or by punishing it.
• Introduce a new behavior that you prefer and reinforce it by rewarding your child.

How do I stop misbehavior?
The best way to stop unwanted behavior is to ignore it. This way works best over a period of time. When you want the behavior to stop immediately, you can use the time-out method.

How do I use the time-out method?
Decide ahead of time the behaviors that will result in a time-out--usually tantrums, or aggressive or dangerous behavior. Choose a time-out place that is uninteresting for the child and not frightening, such as a chair, corner or playpen. When you're away from home, consider using a car or a nearby seating area as a time-out place.

When the unacceptable behavior occurs, tell the child the behavior is unacceptable and give a warning that you will put him or her in time-out if the behavior doesn't stop. Remain calm and don't look angry. If your child goes on misbehaving, calmly take him or her to the time-out area.

If possible, keep track of how long your child's been in time-out. Set a timer so your child will know when time-out is over. Time-out should be brief--generally 1 minute for each year of age--and should begin immediately after reaching the time-out place or after the child calms down. You should stay within sight or earshot of the child, but don't talk to him or her. If the child leaves the time-out area, gently return him or her to the area and consider resetting the timer. When the time-out is over, let the child leave the time-out place. Don't discuss the bad behavior, but look for ways to reward and reinforce good behavior later on.
How do I encourage a new, desired behavior?
One way to encourage good behavior is to use a reward system. This works best in children over 2 years of age. It can take up to 2 months to work. Being patient and keeping a diary of behavior can be helpful to parents.

Choose 1 to 2 behaviors you would like to change (such as bedtime habits, tooth brushing or picking up toys). Choose a reward your child would enjoy. Examples of good rewards are an extra bedtime story, delaying bedtime by half an hour, a preferred snack or, for older children, earning points toward a special toy, a privilege or a small amount of money.

Explain the desired behavior and the reward to the child. For example, "If you get into your pajamas and brush your teeth before this TV show is over, you can stay up a half hour later." Request the behavior only one time. If the child does what you ask, give the reward. You can help the child if necessary but don't get too involved. Because any attention from parents, even negative attention, is so rewarding to children, they may prefer to have parental attention instead of a reward at first. Transition statements, such as, "In 5 minutes, play time will be over," are helpful when you are teaching your child new behaviors.

This system helps you avoid power struggles with your child. However, your child is not punished if he or she chooses not to behave as you ask; he or she simply does not get the reward.
What are some good ways to reward my child?
Beat the Clock (good method for a dawdling child)

Ask the child to do a task. Set a timer. If the task is done before the timer rings, your child gets a reward. To decide the amount of time to give the child, figure out your child's "best time" to do that task and add 5 minutes.

The Good Behavior Game (good for teaching a new behavior)

Write a short list of good behaviors on a chart and mark the chart with a star each time you see the good behavior. After your child has earned a small number of stars (depending on the child's age), give him or her a reward.

Good Marks/Bad Marks (best method for difficult, highly active children)

In a short time (about an hour) put a mark on a chart or on your child's hand each time you see him or her performing a good behavior. For example, if you see your child playing quietly, solving a problem without fighting, picking up toys or reading a book, you would mark the chart. After a certain number of marks, give your child a reward. You can also make negative marks each time a bad behavior occurs. If you do this, only give your child a reward if there are more positive marks than negative marks.

Developing Quiet Time (often useful when you're making supper)

Ask your child to play quietly alone or with a sibling for a short time (maybe 30 minutes). Check on your child frequently (every 2 to 5 minutes, depending on the child's age) and give a reward or a token for each few minutes they were quiet or playing well. Gradually increase the intervals (go from checking your child's behavior every 2 to 5 minutes to checking every 30 minutes), but continue to give rewards for each time period your child was quiet or played well.
What else can I do to help my child behave well?
Make a short list of important rules and go over them with your child. Avoid power struggles, no-win situations and extremes. When you think you've overreacted, it's better to use common sense to solve the problem, even if you have to be inconsistent with your reward or punishment method. Avoid doing this often as it may confuse your child.

Accept your child's basic personality, whether it's shy, social, talkative or active. Basic personality can be changed a little, but not very much. Try to avoid situations that can make your child cranky, such as becoming overly stimulated, tired or bored. Don't criticize your child in front of other people. Describe your child's behavior as bad, but don't label your child as bad. Praise your child often when he or she deserves it. Touch him or her affectionately and often. Children want and need attention from their parents.

Develop little routines and rituals, especially at bedtimes and meal times. Provide transition remarks (such as "In 5 minutes, we'll be eating dinner."). Allow your child choices whenever possible. For example, you can ask, "Do you want to wear your red pajamas or your blue pajamas to bed tonight?"

As children get older, they may enjoy becoming involved in household rule making. Don't debate the rules at the time of misbehavior, but invite your child to participate in rule making at another time.

Children who learn that bad behavior is not tolerated and that good behavior is rewarded are learning skills that will last them a lifetime.
Why shouldn't I use physical punishment?
Parents may choose to use physical punishment (such as spanking) to stop undesirable behavior. The biggest drawback to this method is that although the punishment stops the bad behavior for a while, it doesn't teach your child to change his or her behavior. Disciplining your child is really just teaching him or her to choose good behaviors. If your child doesn't know a good behavior, he or she is likely to return to the bad behavior. Physical punishment becomes less effective with time and can cause the child to behave aggressively. It can also be carried too far -- into child abuse. Other methods of punishment are preferred and should be used whenever possible.

Posted by Lim Sin Loong, T3

Dealing with aggressive child

Although aggressive behavior such as hitting, screaming, and even biting is not seen as all that unusual from a child of one or two years of age, the same conduct in children merely a year or two older is often seen as cruel and problematic. Controlling feelings and emotions is, however, a learned skill and can be very difficult to master (even for some adults!).
Staying calm and collected not only requires a fair amount of self-control and discipline, but also a basic understanding of appropriate social behavior and morality. Most children under the age of five or six have a minimal comprehension of what exactly is socially acceptable, at least beyond pleasing Mom or Dad. Even then, some children may find it difficult to control their temper and yet there is often a difference between a child who is deceptively ‘acting out' (which is rare, and often due to an unstable or unsafe home environment) and one who is simply trying to be assertive.

The majority of children do not recognize their own strength or even the full consequences of their actions; and in a world where they are often being told what to do, where to go and how to behave, it does not seem all that unreasonable that they may sometimes need to speak out and be heard. Those school-aged children who continue to act obnoxiously or aggressively may have never experienced the opportunity of being truly listened to in a loving environment. Listening, on the part of parents involves not only hearing your children's jokes and laughter, but perhaps more importantly hearing about those hurt, angered and unhappy emotions as well. So often, children are not allowed to speak negatively, complain, or offer a difference of opinion and thus their feelings continue to build up until one day they may unintentionally vent or lash out. It is important to remember, however, that hearing your children out does not mean submitting to their every whim or desire.

Aside from releasing pent up emotions, children who behave aggressively may also do so because they have been rewarded for the conduct. Parents may have hoped to raise a child who is strong and able to stand up for him- or herself in rough situations. More commonly, parents may have inadvertently reinforced the aggressive behavior through attention. Indeed, even nagging or punishing children for acting aggressively can make it more likely that they will act that way in the future. Imagine, if you will, a child quietly piecing a puzzle together or even playing a video game. He/She has almost completed the puzzle/game but cannot get the final pieces/play to come together. Throughout this quiet half an hour the parent has been around but has said absolutely nothing. Nothing, that is until the child becomes obviously frustrated and throws the puzzle/game across the room and begins screaming or swearing loudly. At this point the parent intervenes by reprimanding the child and sending him/her to their room. It would appear that the parent has done everything appropriate in this situation, except for the fact that the only attention this child received during the time period was negative. If this is commonly the case, the child may begin to feel that any attention is better than no attention and as a result may continue to act out disruptively in daily activities. When dealing with aggressive children, it is worth the effort to praise even the smallest attempt at proper behavior, while paying very little if any attention to negative conduct. Praise can be a very strong motivator.

It is also important to remember that behavior can be very difficult to change and that it takes a lot of patience. Turning an aggressive child into a nonaggressive child will not happen overnight, and the odd outburst may even occur once the behavior has seemed to restore itself.
In dealing with aggressive children, regardless of their age, here are a few suggestions to consider:
Whether it be rush hour traffic or spilled juice, everyone has those things that really aggravate or irritate them, and children are no different. While they may not be as great at expressing what upsets them, things like a late meal, a missed soccer game, or even a forgotten bedtime story can really agitate children and make them angry. Knowing that your child becomes easily upset under certain circumstances allows parents or care-givers to avoid or work around these situations -- or at the very least, be prepared for them. It might be helpful to keep a journal to figure out what times of day or what occurs prior to each time your child becomes upset. If mornings are difficult for your child, perhaps allow them some extra time to wake up or do not ask a whole lot form them at this point in time. If not being allowed to purchase a toy from the store usually sends them into a tantrum, warn them ahead of time or if possible just leave them at home.

It can be very easy to become angered and even outraged at a misbehaving child, especially an older one who probably should know better. Just be cautious of how you express your feelings, because the children are always watching and learning from you. Yelling or hitting an already angered and destructive child seems only to up the anti. If you expect your children to act responsibly and calmly, be sure to do so yourself. And remember, even a ten or twelve year-old girl or boy is still a child. Children do not form intent the same way adults do and often have little desire to hurt or upset you. They merely need to express themselves and have not yet learned to do so in a socially acceptable manner.

Everyone is born with a unique temperament or personality. Some people tend to be more reserved or timid, while others are always outgoing and spontaneous. Similarly, some children tend to be more outwardly assertive and aggressive and others less so. Knowing your child's personality allows you the advantage of foresight. If your child does not do well with unexpected occurrences, try to keep his or her day routine. Use the insight.

This is perhaps the hardest part of being a parent or caregiver. Role-modeling your own behavior can be difficult even in the easiest of times, but particularly if arguing or fighting is a common occurrence in your household. Nevertheless, you should not expect from others that which you cannot put forth yourself. Even the odd volatile joke or sarcastic remark can be misinterpreted by children, so watch not only your actions but also your words. Being a role model not only involves controlling your own emotions, but also teaching your children how to express theirs — both good and bad— appropriately. Modeling support and compassion for others is an important beginning place, so you may want to volunteer some of your time. Simply bring your neighbor some fresh cut flowers or a fruit basket to say "hello". Visit sick children in the hospital. Work at the food bank with your children over the Christmas holidays. Be the kind of person that you would like your child to grow up to be.

Along the same lines as being a role model, be sure to give your children the chance to see all of your own personal emotions. Modeling appropriate behavior should not be equated with hiding your feelings or fears from them. It is important for your children to see that you are also human, and that it is possible to have the esteem and self-control to act rationally even when feelings may not be.

Although some parents may see rewards as a form of bardering or bribery, it does not have to be that extreme. It also can work really well for older children who in no other way seem to want to stop their aggressive tendencies. Offering your children well-deserved praise, a play at the park, or an opportunity to play at a friends house for proper conduct can work wonders. The key is to inform them of what is first expected, to reward them soon if not immediately after they obey, and to always withhold any and all rewards if they do not obey. So for example, if your child has made it through a shopping trip without any yelling, crying, or hitting, you may want to stop at the park with them on the way home as a thank you. Offering them the park the next day is already too late as it gives them the chance to act inappropriately in the mean time. For rewards to work effectively they also cannot be given to your children if they have not done what was expected of them. Toys can be used as well, but they are not advised and it is always best to start off small otherwise your child may be asking for things each and every time he or she behaves. The best kind of reward is praise. Children need to know their parents are proud of them.

No matter how agitated, upset, or aggressive your child becomes, it is much easier for them to relax if you are also calm. Despite your own concern, do not try to rationalize with them until they have calmed down. Try sending them into their room, or if you have to take yourself out of the situation and stay in your own bedroom or bathroom. If they become overly violent or aggressive you may need to take drastic measures. Call the police if necessary, but stay calm. The more aggravated your child sees you become the more power he or she has gained over you and the more likely he will be to repeat the behavior.

As a final note, if your child tends to be destructive often and does not seem to benefit from appropriate parental intervention, or actually seems to enjoy harming others, please seek professional advice.

Posted by Lim Sin Loong, T3